Ventura Dog Bite Attorney
Dog bite injuries can be very severe, causing pain and suffering to the victim. Some states allow for liability protection for the dog owner for a first occurrence, but California does not. California dog owners are expected to maintain control over their pets and are liable for any assaults that the dog makes, even for a first offense. It makes no difference whether or not the owner previously suspected that their dog had the ability to hurt a person.
Dog Bite Cases in California
Unfortunately, dog bites are a very common occurrence. Most dog bites happen within a family rather than to strangers. Some breeds of dog, such as Bullmastiff, Pit Bull, or Rottweiler, have a tendency to be more aggressive. However, even the sweetest, most mild-mannered dog can be provoked into aggression if put in the right circumstances.
If you own a dog, it’s a good idea to seek out a good dog bite lawyer before a problem arises. California dog owners need to realize that if their dog bites someone, they are almost always at fault. Many other types of personal injury cases require proof that the accident was caused by someone’s negligence. In the case of a California dog bite, however, the dog owner is liable even if there was no negligence and the owner had no idea that the dog had the propensity to bite.
For California dog bite cases, the claim leans heavily in the favor of the plaintiff. The only exceptions occur when the victim was trespassing or the dog was a working government agency dog that was provoked. According to California Civil Code section 3342(a), (https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?lawCode=CIV§ionNum=3342) “The owner of any dog is liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.” In addition, it defines a person as lawfully upon the owner’s property as, “when he is on such property in the performance of any duty imposed upon him by the laws of this state or by the laws or postal regulations of the United States, or when he is on such property upon the invitation, express or implied, of the owner.”
Personal injury cases can be complex, and dog bite cases are different from any other kind. If you or a loved one has sustained injuries from a dog bite, a good personal injury lawyer, such as Dan Higson, can help you navigate the legal maze and get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries. With California dog bite cases, often the claim can be settled with the dog owner’s home insurance company.
What to Do When a Dog Bites
Knowing what to do immediately after a dog bite occurs can help keep you safe and healthy while gathering evidence for a possible personal injury case.
Gather Information – Get the dog owner’s information. If possible, it can be helpful to get a quick photo of the dog and owner in case they try to provide false information. Also get contact information from any witnesses. They can help back up your story if it differs from the owner’s point of view.
Seek Medical Treatment – The most important thing to do after a dog bite is to get medical treatment. It’s important to do this quickly so that you can make sure that any lasting effects are treated. Dogs who bite can carry rabies, and you don’t want to leave that untreated. Doctors will also keep records of your condition for future legal use in your case.
Report the Incident – After a dog bite, report the incident to animal control. This is especially important if the dog did not have an owner present. You can also check animal control records to see if there were any previous attacks from the same dog.
Document Everything – Keep track of all the information you gather after the dog bite occurs. Keep detailed accounts of your medical expenses including bills, prescription, and co-pays. If you have all of the paperwork and documentation from the event organized and on-hand, it will make the legal process much easier.
Compensation that is given to dog bite victims comes from many factors associated with the case. Typical dog bite claims include compensation for:
- Emergency care
- Ongoing medical treatment (including rehabilitation and plastic surgery)
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Psychological care
- Prosthetics and other equipment
- Wrongful death and funeral expenses
Dogs are wonderful pets, but when one is put into a situation that causes it to bite a person, it is a serious problem. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite, let Dan Higson help you get the compensation you deserve. With California’s policy of owner liability, you may have a strong personal injury case.